Temporal range: Lutetian
Bajaichthys elegans 1 by avancna-d1xk2wl
A restoration of Bajaichthys elegans
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Zeiformes
Family: Bajaichthyidae
Genus: Bajaichthys
Sorbini, 1983
Species: B. elegans
Binomial name
Bajaichthys elegans
Sorbini, 1983

Bajaichthys is an extinct Lutetian zeid fish from the Monte Bolca Lagerstatten.

Taxonomic Status[]

Because it appeared to combine features of both taeniosomid lamprids (i.e., its larval form resembles those of oarfish and ribbonfish), and of bathysomid lamprids (the anatomy of the pelvis is extremely similar to that of sailfins), it was attributed to an incertae sedis position within Lampriformes. Further research placed it within Zeiformes, another group of acanthomorph teleosts.

Anatomy and Appearance[]

The holotype is four centimeters in length. It has a deep, oblong-shaped body, a deep, but short head, a long tail composed of 27 caudal vertebrae, a long, crest-like dorsal fin, a long, banner-like anal fin with 29 to 30 rays running from the posterior region of the body down the entire length of the tail, and two enormous, wing-like pelvic fins.

The holotype (and only known specimen) is regarded as the remains of a larval ("youthful") form due to its small size and due to its strong similarity to the larval form of trachypterid ribbonfish.